Posts Tagged ‘Money’


     The key to good, no GREAT, Real Estate Joint Venture (JV) Partnerships is good record keeping and good communication. 

       I found this audio recording with George Dube and Russell Westcott and wanted to share it with you … it is approx 45 minutes long, but FILLED with good information for both seasoned and newbie investors.

       In this audio they talk about the importance of proper financial reporting to both your investors, and the CRA, as well as on Raising Capital to grow your own investment portfolio.

       Making sure that you are properly handling the accounting and tax issues that arise when dealing in joint ventures is critical to your success in both attracting and keeping good partners.

       We attribute our own success with navigating the paper trail to having strong team members, including Lisa who owns Balanced Beans Bookkeeping; and from always continuing to grow our knowledge base by listening to people who are already successful in the areas we want to be in.

       We provide quarterly reports and pay our Joint Venture Partners on a quarterly basis, and provide full access to our books for any partner that would like to visit our office. Timely book keeping, clear records and an easy to use filing system have helped us to not only grow our business, but to keep stress at a minimum.

      I strongly encourage you to Click below to connect through to George Dube’s blog and then listen in as Russell Westcott, of the Real Estate Investment Network (REIN), interviews George Dube of Dube & Cuttini Accountants, and then to take an Action that will get you on the right track to raising capital and keeping your Investors for the long term.

Click here for the Audio

      I love to hear your comments on this audio or with any questions that you have.   Additionally, if you are interested in partnering in with Jeff and I, please let us know.  We are your “no pressure” source of information on partnering.. 

We love to help others become Financially Educated and to make good choices that make sense for your circumstance. 

 To Your Financial Freedom!



True Wealth is having Money, Health & Happiness, and living life in such a way as you feel secure & happy at a level that fits your own personality.  

The first step to having money is to become Financially Literate.  What does that mean?   

The following excerpt was taken from the Blog by Robert Kiyosaki at  He is one of the people that I listen to and has been a large part of our own success.  In his blog he shared 15 Lessons on what he would include in a school system that would teach financial literacy.  Even if you’re not in school anymore, these would be valuable things for you to study and learn on your own as part of your journey towards financial literacy.  Learn about them here and then share what YOU think is important to know and learn!

The history of money

It’s important to understand how money works, and part of doing that is by studying how it’s worked in the past. Money has progressed over the centuries from something pretty simple like bartering to something pretty complicated like derivatives. It’s gone from being an object to an idea, so it’s not tangible and intuitive. It’s important to study money to grow rich. Some dates that are important:

  • 1903 – Rockefeller’s General Education Board takes over the U.S. education system
  • 1913 – The Federal Reserve is formed
  • 1929 – The Great Depression
  • 1944 – The Bretton Woods agreement
  • 1971 – Nixon takes the dollar off the gold standard
  • 1974 – Congress passes the Employee Retirement Income Security Act 

Understanding your financial statement

My rich dad often said, “Your banker never asks to see your report card. A banker wants to see your financial statement—your report card when you leave school.”

To grow rich, you must know how to read and understand the three parts of your financial statement: Profit and loss statement, balance sheet, cash flow statement.

The difference between an asset and a liability

One reason many people are in financial trouble is because they confuse liabilities with assets. For instance, many people think their house is an asset when it’s really a liability. A simple definition of an asset is anything that puts money in your pocket. A simple definition of a liability is anything that takes money out of your pocket.

The difference between capital gains and cash flow

Many people invest for capital gains, meaning they’re betting on the price of something to go up. Unfortunately, today, many people are taking it in the shorts. Investing for capital gains is akin to gambling, only not as much fun. Instead of investing for capital gains, the wealthy invest for cash flow and capital gains are icing on the cake, if they do happen.

The difference between fundamental and technical investing

Fundamental investing is the process of analyzing a company’s financial performance, and that begins with understanding a financial statement. Technical investing is measuring the emotions or moods of the markets by using technical indicators. You can invest successfully doing both types of investing, but both take commitment and continued financial education.

Measuring an asset’s strength

There is no shortage of opportunities in the world of investing. The question then becomes, which investments are worth pursuing? A key component of a full financial education is understanding how to measure whether an asset is strong or not. One of the best ways to do this is to refer to the B-I Triangle which looks at an assets full properties: Team, leadership, mission, cash flow, communication, systems, legal, and product.

Know how to choose good people

Partners are crucial to business success. My rich dad used to say, “The best way to know a good partner is to have had a bad partner.” You need to learn from every interaction. A good deal can blow up if you have a bad partner. So choosing partners and team members well is crucial.

Know what asset is best for you

There are four asset classes: Business, real estate, paper assets, and commodities. To grow rich, you must study these classes, choose what is best for you, and work towards becoming an expert.

Know when to focus and when to diversify

Ideally, you’ll want to be diversified in all four asset classes, but you’ll want to focus on becoming an expert in one at a time. An old adage is that if you try to please everyone, you’ll please no one. The same could be said for investing.

Minimize risk

In investing and business, there is always an element of risk. A smart investor knows how to minimize risk by hedging. There are a number ways you can do that within each asset class. Study up on ways to minimize risk in your chosen asset class.

Know how to minimize taxes

It’s not about how much you make, it’s about how much you keep. Taxes make an unintelligent person poor. A financially intelligent person understands how to use the tax code to his or her advantage.

The difference between debt and credibility

As many of you know, there is good debt and there is bad debt. The key to using debt is knowing how to borrow wisely and how to pay back the money. Without a solid plan to pay back debt, you’ll soon have no credibility. A solid financial education will include understanding debt and how to pay that debt back.

Know how to use derivatives

Derivatives are things derived out of another object. For instance, orange juice is a derivative of an orange. My business is a derivative of my mind. Tax-free money from a refinance is a derivative of another asset, my investment property. There are many ways to use derivatives to create wealth.

Know how your wealth is stolen

There are four things that steal your wealth: Taxes, debt, inflation, and retirement. A proper financial education will stress understanding how to use these wealth-stealing forces to make money rather than lose money.

Know how to make mistakes

It’s impossible to learn without making mistakes along the way. The key is to learn the lessons of those mistakes, not to let them take you out of the game. Look at failure as a learning opportunity.

 I can tell you from experience that Jeff and I know these lessons but continue to learn more every day.  We apply them into our life on a regular basis.  These lessons also include making mistakes.  For us, we don’t look at the mistakes as devasting, nor do we dwell on them.  We look at them as Learnings, and realize that if we were not Learning along the way, we would not continue to grow our minds or our wealth.   So keep moving forward and know that every step along the way can take YOU to a better place :) 

What do you think?  I love you hear your comments & to share them with others …

To your success, Norma


In keeping with one of my life lessons of “Who do you Listen to?” I wanted to share with you an article from July Ono.  She is one of the people I like, respect and learn from as a Real Estate Investor.  She is where I want to go as an investor and who has been where I am at…   The following article appeared in her on-line news letter and I wanted to share it with you!

Are You Thinking Globally and Locally?

By July Ono

July Ono along with her husband Steve Cain own and manage a $30 million real estate portfolio and are the founders of On The Beach Education® Corporation, an ongoing coaching and mentoring program designed to take the fear out of real estate investing. Between 2006 and 2008, their mentees purchased over $38 million in investment properties, making July’s program, The Power of Real Estate, a foundation for achieving financial independence sooner rather than later.

July Ono is one of the people I like, respect and learn from as a Real Estate Investor.  The following article appeared in her on-line news letter and I wanted to share it with you!

Global economic trends can have a tremendous impact on local real estate values. The trick is to stay ahead of the trend. You can anticipate these trends and get into a market just before it starts to uptrend. It takes nerves of steel backed by extensive due diligence and the rewards can be substantial.

I automatically read the business and real estate section of any newspaper that comes my way and discard the rest. I subscribe to specialty subscriptions such as the Western Investor, Business In Vancouver, BC Business Magazine, Canadian Apartment Magazine to name a few. What am I looking for? Indicators. Red flags. Trends.

 Ever notice the rising value of real estate when a new transportation system is announced? When the Coquihalla Highway was being built in British Columbia, savvy investors were already buying property at the end of the highway at rock bottom prices. I pay attention to announcements related to transportation systems such as road construction and upgrades, bridges, airport expansions. Construction activity brings in work crews who need to be housed. After they are gone, the new transportation system connects people and opens up a new real estate market.

I take note of articles announcing government funding, plant construction or closures, appearance of big box stores such as Wal-Mart and their grand openings. These are significant indicators of an economic trend and are worth investigation. Why is the Federal government injecting hundreds of millions of dollars into rural road improvements in northern British Columbia? Why would Wal-Mart move into a previously depressed region and sign a ten year lease? Big box stores do not just move into an area without extensive due diligence. How would the construction of a new mill or plant affect the local and regional economy? Is the economic diversification of an area substantial enough to warrant a major investment? My question to you is: are you asking the right questions?

Statistics Canada and CMHC (Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation) surveys are after-the-fact. These numbers prove a trend after it’s happened. They are useful tools and just one of many indicators.

China and India are becoming the next global giants. Based on population alone, these two countries will out-consume North America with their growing middle class in the order of billions. The race for commodities is on. Everything from oil & gas, coal, copper, aluminum, steel, molybdenum (to make stainless steel), PVC piping, cement – the raw ingredients used to make cell phones, automobiles, appliances, buildings – has gone up in price. There is more demand than supply. These indicators affect local construction prices. For instance, an article in a BC newspaper recently highlighted the halt of construction to a condominium project. The pre-sales were completed 2 years previously. This project got caught in the price hike and ran out of money.

There are economic indicators all across the nation from major city centers to rural towns. Conduct further investigation and due diligence to verify the financial ramifications with these indicators. How long will the trend last? Is it a short term spike or a long term windfall? When you filter out all the hype, do the fundamentals work? The key is to find your niche and become the expert.

Alberta is experiencing a booming economy with particular focus on the oil & gas sector. The province is diversifying their economic base into biotechnology, trade and technical schools, call centers, engineering and technical services. This is wise future planning so their economy is not dependent on a single resource.

British Columbia is also experiencing a similar boom. Ghost towns in northern BC are revitalized as mines and drilling programs reopen. Real estate has seen tremendous appreciation in the last couple years in both BC and Alberta.

 Similar to the stock market, real estate investors enjoy positive returns on the uptrend with increasing cash flow, principle reduction and equity gain. Unlike the stock market, there are no puts or stop losses when the real estate trend reverses. This is the time when builders, developers and flippers suffer from being caught out. This is where a long term strategy in real estate can hedge your investment regardless of the real estate cycle.

Monitoring global and local trends will help you strategize your next real estate investment purchase.

I appreciate your thoughts and comments on all articles I publish.. WHO do you listen to and what do you think of this article?


What would you do?Recently I found this quote on a website from Rich Dad …. “Always Make Money in a Win-Win Situation ~

Always make money in a win-win situation. Everyone involved in the transaction should be satisfied and feel like a winner.

If you make money at someone else’s expense, it will come back to you in a negative way. Remember, what goes around, comes around” 

This quote reminded me of a situation that recently came up between 2 couples that we have been mentoring, of which one of them is a JV Partner in a property with us, and the other couple a potential JV Partner.

Our current JV partners decided they would like to sell one of the properties that we co-own with a 50% share.  We agreed with them that the timing was appropriate and that a substantial capital gain could be had by all parties.  We had held the property for approx 2 years.  They have only $ 8000 capital invested and we have each been recieving excellent cash flow payments for approx 18 months.

The existing mortgage on title is held in their name, and as a result, they have final say & signatures on the sales deal.  Together, with the help of a Real Estate agent, we decided on a selling price. 

An offer came in, it was accepted by our partners (with our blessings) and the paperwork began… with the anticipation of a quick closing.  Also of interest is that both the purchasers and the sellers are business acquaintances of each other and both are mentored by us.

As in all things in life, hiccups and challenges will arise when one least expects them.  In this case, the hiccup came in regards to the quick close anticipated.  Due to some inexperience in the sellers end, handwritten notes were made on the purchase offer, and the offer needed to be altered, prepared again and then signed.  All creating some time delays.  To add to the time challenge, the legal team (acting for both sides) had summer holidays interfere with the timeliness of the documentation being prepared.  All normal.  Perhaps a little annoying, but certainly not unacceptable or unusual.

As in most real estate deals, an appraisal was required in ordered to prepare for bank financing.  The appraisal was paid for by the purchasers, and the appraiser was chosen by the bank.  The appraisal came in at approximately $ 35,000 higher than the agreed upon selling price.  The seller asked the purchaser at what value the apprasial came in.  The buyer (who was reluctant to share the information), felt she had no choice but to reveal the appraised price with total honesty ~ and told the seller of the appraised value

Here is where the ethical question comes in. 

The time lapse created an opportunity for the seller to legally back out of the sales agreement….. What would you do?

In a future blog I will release the ending to this real life dilemma… Stay tuned!  In the mean time, I would love you to share your thoughts on this situation.  What would you do?  What do you think should happen?  I look forward to your comments!




As Real Estate Investors, Jeff and I looked & trained in a number of areas including Tax Liens & Deeds. Although we have chosen NOT to follow this path, many of our friends and mentors do use this strategy with great success. Today I read this article on the RichDad Education Blog and wanted to share it with you, as one strategy to consider when building your own path to True Wealth. I hope you will read this article and open your mind to another Real Estate Strategy to consider! We both thank Robert Kiyosaki and his commitment to financial literacy, as his first book was a turning point to building our own path to Financial Freedom & True Wealth!

Tax Liens and Deeds Overview

Property tax is one of the primary ways cities and counties generate revenue to fund the services they provide. When taxes aren’t paid, these government entities still need a way to borrow the tax money that isn’t paid, and often do this by selling tax liens and deeds to investors. Tax liens are effectively loans that can be turned into a deed if not repaid after a certain period of time, often called the redemption period. A tax deed is a deed to the property which may or may not have a redemption period. Laws vary from state to state, but here are some of the basic advantages of tax lien investing.

Tax Liens and Deeds Advantages

Priority Lien. If a property tax is not paid and a lien is placed on the property, then the tax lien position moves in front of other mortgages and trust deeds. This gives a great deal of security—if you had to foreclose on the tax lien certificate, and become the owner by getting the deed, then you would own the property free and clear.

High Interest Rates. To encourage investors and penalize delinquent taxpayers, interest rates are often set high. Interest rates can range anywhere from 8 to 50% depending on the state you are investing in. Read the rest of this entry »


          True Wealth has many components and comes from many areas in life,  Financial Education is one of the most important parts of obtaining and keeping True Wealth.  You learn by doing, by making both good & bad decisions and learning from those decisions; and by following what others are doing that already have what you want. 

We are big fans of on-going financial education and we listen to a variety of experts in many areas.  We make our own decisions, but draw from the education we have and from the knowledge that others share.

 The following short video includes a few of the people that Jeff and I have learned from (and personally met and like) including: Robert & Kim Kiyosaki from Rich Dad and a few of their personal Advisors including his Accountant Tom Wheelwright; Mike Maloney who is an expert in Gold & Silver and Ken McElroy from the MC Group of Companies – who is an expert in Real Estate.  

We hope this short video will inspire you to keep learning & growing your own financial awareness and help you to get, stay or become motivated to learn more on finances & money – so that Your Unfair Advantage will be education!